The sodomy trial of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim entered its second day with Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan continuing his testimony in-camera at the request of Anwar’s lawyers. The proceedings stood down after the closed session for the trial judge to visit the condominium apartment where the alleged offence took place.

Hearing resumed in open court at 2.45pm with Anwar’s lead counsel Karpal Singh making an application to cite Malay daily Utusan Malaysia for contempt over the newspaper’s front page coverage of the case.

This was turned down.

Earlier, Anwar arrived at the court room at 10.02am and the hearing started at 10.30am.

Ramkarpal Singh Deo, who is among Anwar’s lawyers, said Mohd Saiful was still under examination-in-chief by Solicitor-General II Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden.

The one-time Anwar special aide was the first witness to take the stand when the trial opened before High Court Judge Datuk Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah inside a packed court Thursday.

The in-camera session lasted for 30 minutes, after which the trial judge, prosecution and defence, including Anwar, left at 11.43am to visit the condominium where the alleged offence took place.

Mohd Saiful, accompanied by his lawyer Zamri Idrus, also joined them.

The 63-year-old PKR adviser and Member of Parliament for Permatang Pauh is charged with sodomising Mohd Saiful at Unit 11-5-1 of the Desa Damansara Condominium in Jalan Setiakasih, Bukit Damansara, between 3.01pm and 4.30pm on June 26, 2008.

He is charged under Section 377B of the Penal Code and can be sentenced to a maximum of 20 years in jail and whipping upon conviction. The trial takes place 18 months after Anwar was charged in court in August 2008.

Anwar’s lead counsel Karpal Singh had asked for Mohd Saiful’s testimony to be heard in-camera when the latter, under the prosecution’s examination-in-chief, was describing what happened in the condominium that day.

Mohd Saiful, 24, told the court that Anwar had asked him for sex at the condominium after he went there to hand over documents to Anwar and discuss their work schedule.

In his testimony, he said he had worked for Anwar for four months, from early March 2008 to June 28 of the same year, and stopped being Anwar’s special aide because he did not want to be sodomised by Anwar any more. -- Bernama

Blow-by-blow account of today's proceedings:

4.30pm: Case adjourned to 9.30am tomorrow.

4pm: CCTV recording display marred by computer crashes, but accuser Mohd Saiful identifies himself entering the lift.

In continuing his testimony, Mohd Saiful says that two days after the alleged sodomy, he had gone to two private hospitals before going to the KL Hospital. He was advised to do so because, having claimed to have been raped, he was told that reports from private hospitals cannot be used in a court of law.

3.50pm: Prosecution starts playing CCTV video recording taken at the entrance of condo on June 26, 2008.

3.33pm: Trial resumes. Court decides not to cite Utusan Malaysia for contempt. Saiful resumes his testimony.

3.15pm: Court adjourns for 5mins while trial judge considers Karpal Singh’s application to cite Utusan Malaysia for contempt of court.

3pm: Karpal Singh brings Utusan Malaysia and says its articles today are tantamount to contempt of court. He says the coverage is mischievous and false with inaccurate and misleading facts. He cites as examples two headings.

The prosecution argues that inaccurate reports do not warrant action unless they were done maliciously.

2.54pm: The trial resumes.

2.42pm: Anwar Ibrahim’s lead counsel Karpal Singh arrives in court.

2.36pm: Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s daughter, Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar, arrives in court with two of her sisters.

2.30pm: Another unidentified man confronts a police officer and the situation gets slightly tense. The officer walks away, but the man is heard saying: “I’m not afraid of getting arrested. I’ve been arrested many times.”

2.23pm: Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Ismail arrive at court, accompanied by their daughter Nurul Nuha. Supporters chant “Reformasi.”

An unidentified man starts chatting with reporters outside of the court lobby. He distributes some leaflets. He claims nobody is “sponsoring” him to speak in public like this and he is only seeking justice for Mohd Saiful Bukhari.

2.20pm: Reporters allowed into the court; trial to continue in open court.

1.30pm: It is believed that during the court’s visit to the condominium, the accused Mohd Saiful Bukhari had re-enacted and demonstrated to the trial judge how the alleged sodomy took place. He had done this at the request of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s lead counsel Karpal Singh.

12.59pm: Anwar, his lead counsel Karpal Singh and trial judge Justice Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah leave condominium. Trial to resume at 2.30pm.

12.20pm: The press is barred from entering the condominium. Several women from the PKR heckle Saiful there.

11.59am: The convoy reaches the Desa Damansara Condominium where the alleged sodomy took place. Anwar, his wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and Saiful reach there a few minutes later.

11.49am: The convoy, comprising of 15 cars and two vans, leaves the Jalan Duta Court Complex for the condominium.

11.00am: The sodomy trial held in-camera which actually started at 10.30am is now over.

All parties including the trial judge and both the defence and prosecution teams will visit the Desa Damansara Condominium where the alleged sodomy of Saiful took place.

Deputy head of prosecution (policy) Datuk Nordin Hassan, who confirmed that the in-camera proceedings are over, adds that Solicitor-General Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden applied for all parties to visit the condominium in Bukit Damansara.

Recommended reading:
* Saiful Bukhari Azlan vs Anwar Ibrahim sodomy trial - Day 1

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